Hotty toddy, gosh almighty, who the hell are we? Ole Miss is asking itself the question following coach Hugh Freeze's stunning resignation Thursday after school officials found a "pattern" of personal conduct issues that included phone calls to a number associated with a female escort service.
Freeze went 39-25 at Ole Miss and guided the Rebels to a Sugar Bowl win, two victories over Alabama when the Tide were ranked in the top three and several decorated recruiting classes. He also leaves the program in a perilous spot, as Ole Miss self-imposed a postseason ban this season, already is operating with self-imposed scholarship reductions and still faces the outcome of an NCAA investigation that traces back to 2012.
Ole Miss will get through the season with Matt Luke, the team's co-offensive coordinator and line coach promoted Thursday to interim head coach, before pursuing Freeze's permanent successor. It will be no ordinary search, given the timing and the uncertainty around the program.
Thankfully, ESPN.com's search firm is always working, and it convened for a surprise midsummer brainstorming session. Andrea Adelson and Edward Aschoff (an Oxford, Mississippi, native) joined me to break down the Ole Miss job, the strategy for the search and the candidates the school should pursue.